Fire crews extinguish major blaze in university science building

More than 30 firefighters have extinguished a major blaze in a science building at the University of St Andrews.

Eight fire appliances were sent to the scene after reports of a fire involving suspected hazardous materials just before 5pm on Sunday.

The biomedical sciences building is on the North Haugh in the Fife town.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said the building was evacuated and there were no casualties.

Firefighters extinguished the blaze by late evening on Sunday but remained at the scene to make the area safe and deal with any remaining hotspots.

Images posted on social media showed flames in the windows of the building.

Police were also at the scene and roads in the area were closed while emergency services dealt with the incident.

The university tweeted a statement saying: “The Biomedical Sciences building at the University of St Andrews has suffered a serious fire late this afternoon.

“No reports of any injuries or anyone in the building. The Fire Brigade are still at the scene.”

A fire service spokesman said: “More than 30 firefighters worked to extinguish a large fire at a St Andrews University building.

“The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service was alerted at 4.58pm on Sunday, February 10 to reports of a fire involving suspected hazardous materials on North Haugh Street, St Andrews.

“At its height, Operations Control mobilised eight fire engines including a height appliance and specialist resources.

“The building was fully evacuated and there were no casualties.”

Built in the late 1990s, the building is shared by the university’s Schools of Chemistry and Biology.

The four-storey structure houses laboratories where scientists conduct medically focused research in organic and synthetic chemistry, virology and microbiology.

The university said it is known as a centre of excellence addressing issues such as antibiotic resistance and infectious disease.

Around 100 staff and postgraduate students work in the building.

Stephen Gethins, North East Fife MP, tweeted: “Huge thanks to emergency services for their work tonight @univofstandrews and relief that there are no casualties.

“However some fantastic & ground breaking research is done in the building. Thinking about those whose work might have been affected.”

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